What impact does digitalisation have on our society? What if we were to transform the virtual or immaterial into physical products? What if we made the intangible real? The innovations in the field of virtual reality and smart home applications are hot on each other’s heels. What better way to follow this technological progress than in a live experience? This year we see that multiple participants have adopted the trend to make the digital more tangible. Experience what virtual reality, smart home applications and algorithms could mean for you.  


“Materialising the Internet’ by MU Artspace is a great example of this development. In this exhibition you come to the realisation that the virtual is already completely integrated in our environment. Algorithms can link you to a new love, we can store gifs in our DNA, implant RFID chips in our hands to open the doors to our homes. But how far do we want things to go? Participant Lauren McCarthy arouses our awareness for a new reality in which we casually allow all sorts of intelligent devices into our lives that register everything like Amazon’s Echo. What if it was a person that stood in the middle of the living room and experienced everything? Would we be as comfortable with sharing everything then?


MAD Emergent Art Center, Hyperspace Collective & ViolaVirus take you to a virtual fairy-tale desert in the exhibition ‘Manifestations – Will the future design us?’ in the Veem building. Exhibitors taking part in this exhibition include: Zanne and Dick Janssen from Ideenlab.nl who lend Virtual Reality (VR) new meaning with the project Run Away? VR/AR. This experience takes you on a journey that a refugee endures in which all your senses (you experience smells, vibrations and touch) are activated. Another impressive VR experience is Second Livestock in which headsets with a VR application could perhaps improve how chickens experience the world. Second Livestock is part of the exhibition Robotanica by Transnatural, see it in the VDMA.  


Young talent from the Design Academy Eindhoven (DAE) also dived into the possibilities of the digital world. Unfortunately, Simon Dogger is experiencing for himself what loss of vision does to your experience of emotions. With his Emotion Whisperer application (an app and a visor with built-in camera) he can transform emotions into specific vibrations that the telephone transmits for people with impaired vision. Carl Rethmann scans physical objects and, with the help of artificial intelligence, he links the scans to digital information that is to be found on the internet, like symbols, history and other facts. With ‘Roam the Web: the Collective’ Ymkje Kamphuis is raising awareness among internet users about how online activity influences our imaging and so consequently also our behaviour.


In this edition you can experience virtual reality live in different locations and various new technologies and innovations are being tested at the MU, in the Veem and in the DAE.